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Long Beach Assault With a Deadly Weapon Defense Attorney

Assault with a deadly weapon is a serious crime that can result in misdemeanor or felony charges depending on whether or not the alleged victim was injured, the type of weapon involved and the intentions of the defendant at the time of the incident. A conviction for assault with a deadly weapon in Long Beach can result in years of incarceration and count as a strike under the California Three Strikes Law.

Considering the severe penalties and serious consequences that result from an assault with a deadly weapon conviction, it is important to protect your rights by retaining the services of an experienced Long Beach criminal defense lawyer who has successfully handled similar cases. At The Amer Law Firm, we understand how to build efficient defense strategies to help our clients achieve the best possible result. Please contact us if you are facing an assault with a deadly weapon charge. We are here to help protect your rights every step of the way.

Understanding the Charges

According to California Penal Code Section 245 (a) (1), assault with a deadly weapon involves "any person who commits an assault upon the person of another with a deadly weapon or instrument other than a firearm or by any means of force likely to produce great bodily injury."

What is a Deadly Weapon?

A number of assault with a deadly weapon cases involve firearms and knives. However, California law allows for just about anything to be defined as a deadly weapon. It is common for individuals to face assault with a deadly weapon charges if they attacked someone with a vehicle, rocks, baseball bats, sticks and pens. You can even face deadly weapons charges for causing a serious injury while attacking with your hands and feet. Attempting to kick someone once will typically result in assault charges, but assault with a deadly weapon charges can result from an incident involving multiple punches and kicks that result in bodily injury to the alleged victim.

The Threat of Harm and Actual Injuries

The alleged victim does not have to actually suffer a great bodily injury for the defendant to face assault with a deadly weapon charges. Battery charges require actual harm while assault charges only require the present ability to injure. Therefore, individuals can face assault with a deadly weapon charges for trying to cause great bodily injuries with a deadly weapon.

Assault Involving Great Bodily Injury

The most severe penalties for assault and battery are reserved for cases involving deadly weapons and great bodily injuries. Similar to how the law does not specifically define deadly weapons, there is no list of injuries that qualify as great bodily injury. In general, great bodily injury involves severe injuries such as bone fractures and head injuries, but the prosecution can claim that any painful injury that requires medical care qualifies as a great bodily injury.

Elements of the Crime

In order to obtain a conviction for an assault with a deadly weapon charge, the prosecution must prove that the defendant did assault someone and that the assault was committed with a deadly weapon or some other means of force likely to cause great bodily injury. The prosecutor does not have to prove that the defendant injured another person or that the defendant even made actual physical contact with another person. All that matters from the point of view of a conviction is that the defendant had the ability and intent to cause injury or harm to the other person.

Penalties for a Conviction

Misdemeanor penalties for assault with a deadly weapon in can include up to $10,000 in fines, a year in county jail, restitution to the victim and possible community service. Felony assault with a deadly weapon is punishable by up to four years in California state prison, $10,000 in fines, victim restitution and a strike under California's Three Strikes Law.

Possible Defenses

It is alarming to see how many individuals are wrongfully accused and arrested on suspicion of this crime. An experienced Long Beach criminal defense lawyer could present a number of effective defenses such as your inability to carry out the attack. Self-defense or the defense of others is a common valid defense. Consent is another important issue to take into consideration. For example, if you are participating in a fight club with the consent of all participants and organizers, then, you should not be charged. Another defense in such cases is lack of intent. For example, if you threw an object in the air and it accidentally hits and injures someone, you cannot be charged because you did not intend to hurt that person. It may be a reckless act, but it is not assault with a deadly weapon absent intent.

Contacting an Experienced Lawyer

The skilled Long Beach criminal defense lawyers at The Amer Law Firm routinely find that prosecutors have insufficient evidence or that law enforcement failed to follow proper investigation procedures. The consequences of such a conviction can be long-term and often, even lifelong. Please contact us at (866) 431-2637 to find out how we can help you defend these serious charges.

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Disclaimer: The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this or associated pages, documents, comments, answers, emails, or other communications should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information on this website is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing of this information does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. Please contact a criminal lawyer at our law firm for information regarding your particular case. This website is not intended to solicit clients outside the State of California.

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